Seller of $170,000 Lucid Air EV Luxury Sedan Says He Wants Cheap EVs- But He Won’t Be Building Them

  • Lucid’s CEO Peter Rawlinson says he wants cheap EVs for all, but can’t build them
  • Rawlinson hopes that range technology from the Air trickles down to other, cheaper EVs
  • If you can’t afford the $80,000 Air, the Nissan Leaf is there for you

Peter Rawlinson is a man on a roll. His company, Lucid Motors, appears to have won the EV range game, at least for the time being. That, of course, was achieved with the Lucid Air, the company’s EV luxury sedan. As many of you may well know, the new sedan is capable of north of 500 miles of range on a single charge. The Air is also one of the most pricey EVs on the market, starting at nearly $80,000. But Rawlinson says he doesn’t want to build cars for the wealthy.

How much will the Lucid Air cost?

A gold Lucid Air Dream Edition EV luxury sedan shot from the high 3/4 on a rainy runway
The Lucid Air starts at $80,000 | Lucid Motors

Obviously, that’s in direct contradiction with the brand’s lineup. A top-tier Lucid Air Dream Edition starts at $169,000, with the base model starting at the aforementioned $80k. Of course, that places Lucid in direct competition with another luxury EV automaker: Tesla. However, Rawlinson told Axios that he really doesn’t want to be just another Tesla. The man has aspirations of cheap EVs for everyone, despite the starting price of his company’s models.

“The biggest challenge I’ve always faced was getting money, not going bankrupt, having that investment as a startup to develop this” (the Air), Rawlinson told Axios. From what it sounds like, the best way to get his dream company off the ground was a luxury sedan with an EV powertrain. It’s hip to appear green now, and Rawlinson clearly knows where the investment money is. But the man really does want to begin to push Lucid down-market, if not by much.

Lucid wants cheap EVs for all, but won’t make them

Lucid Motors CEO Peter Rawlinson
Lucid Motors CEO Peter Rawlinson | Noam Galai via Getty Images

“Start with this, but my passion: get this down from $169,000 to under $70,000 by the end of next year.” Slicing a fat 100 g’s off the pricing of your lineup is a bold move, to say the least. The Lucid Air is a premium luxury offering, and that’s not going to change. To do so would, in Rawlinson’s defense, be a massive shift of his company’s business model. Despite being CEO Rawlinson has to answer to boards, shareholders, and the like while still making Lucid profitable.

So, will there ever be a cheap Lucid Air of some kind? In short, no. But Rawlinson hopes that his company’s breakthroughs in EV range will help to move the rest of the EV industry forward. Americans are still massively concerned with range anxiety, especially in rural areas. Rawlinson hopes that other brands will fill the gaps between the cheap EVs you can buy right now and the Lucid Air while taking advantage of the new EV range bar set by the Air.

What is the best cheap EV right now?

A grey 2022 Nissan Leaf EV shot in profile
Nissan makes one of the cheapest EVs right now | Nissan

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Thankfully, if you can’t swing a Lucid Air Dream Edition, there’s still some solid affordable EVs out there. The Nissan Leaf is one of them, with 226 miles of range and an MSRP of just $27,400. As for how Lucid’s battery tech will make its way into other EVs, we’ll have to wait and see. But rest assured, when they do, it’ll completely change the EV game.